Improve your company’s reputation and employee retention by committing to diversity and inclusion. Executive recruiters must secure a diverse workplace. These tips will help you engage your employees, promote innovation, improve your hiring process and drive sales.
Diversity and inclusion have become a priority of executive recruiters in recent years. Creating an inclusive workplace full of variety is key to promoting more innovation and creativity among employees. It also fosters a positive work environment and improves your business’s overall quality of work.
How do executive recruiters impact the diversity of an organization? Do executive recruiters have an obligation to propose diverse candidates? How can executive recruiters positively impact an organization by focusing on diversity and inclusion? Here is what you need to know.
Table of Contents
To know how executive recruiters can impact a company’s diversity or organization, it’s first important to understand diversity and inclusion in the workplace. It’s often categorized as race and gender, but it has a much broader scope and can also include:
- Age diversity
- Generational diversity
- Diverse geographic locations
- Diverse languages and accents
- Sexual orientation diversity
- Religious and spiritual diversity
- Cultural diversity
- Diverse mental and physical abilities, including mental health
- Educational diversity
- Socioeconomic diversity, and so on.
Diversity and inclusion in the workplace can include differences in people’s work and life experiences. It can pertain to their varying beliefs regarding politics, morals, values, and other essential facets of personal and professional life. A workplace that celebrates employee differences is critical.
Along with the various types of diversity and inclusion in the workplace, there are four main layers to workplace diversity to be aware of. Accounting for all four layers is what makes your company or organization as comprehensive and inclusive for everyone as it possibly can be.
Those four layers of diversity and inclusion are as follows:
- Internal diversity
- External diversity
- Organizational workplace diversity
- Worldview diversity
Let’s examine each one more closely to understand better what they mean.
Internal diversity pertains to the demographics a person is born with and plays a large part in how they present themselves to others. Personally diverse perspectives include race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and gender identity.
External diversity covers characteristics that heavily influence a person, such as socioeconomic status, education, and religion. These external factors can be changed. However, maintaining the status quo may make it hard to change.
Organizational workplace diversity is all about what people do and where they work. It includes elements like job function, seniority, and the department. Corporate diversity ensures each department is staffed with unique employees, improving a company’s production, performance, and reputation.
Past experiences often shape a person’s worldview. Thus, it can be different from person to person. Worldview diversity comes from political beliefs, general outlook on life, and cultural influences. This perspective can change rapidly depending on a person’s exposure to various events.
Now armed with an understanding of the different types of diversity, you can begin to understand how executive recruiters may impact an organization’s diversity and inclusion agenda.
Research indicates that DEI is often top of mind for executive recruiters. The topic will likely continue to have great importance as time marches on. Executive recruiters are trusted to provide the best pool of candidates possible. They help weed out duds and determine the studs while respecting diversity and inclusion protocols.
The goal is for the candidate list to be balanced yet varied. Potential employees must offer key talents and experiences to the companies they join. Pursuing workplace diversity requires more effort than posting available jobs with appropriate mentions. Compiling a pool of distinct candidates is an intentional practice that requires time and effort.
A lack of diversity and inclusion in a company or organization’s leadership team is a missed opportunity. You need to have diverse leaders at the executive level to set examples and expectations for your employees and the whole organization. Pursuing diversity and inclusion agendas should be a team effort. However, building variety doesn’t happen overnight.
To help pursue more diverse candidates, executive recruiters can tap into their resources and networks. They can also follow these six steps for guidance:
- Understand diversity
- Connect with stakeholders and board members
- Consult experts
- Focus on hiring the right person for the position
- Offer diversity support resources
- Revamp your hiring process
Here is a breakdown of each step and a summary of its corporate benefits:
Suppose you’re going to foster diversity and inclusion in your company or organization. In that case, it’s first essential to understand what diversity means and looks like. The four layers and various types listed above can act as your guide.
Ultimately, diversity is about representation. You want to ensure that your employees don’t feel alone within your organization. Give them other people they think they can relate to. Form groups based on various factors, then watch as productivity increases and workplace morale improves.
It’s important to get stakeholders and board members to understand the importance of diversifying leadership. You should explain the benefits of committing to more diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Then periodically update everyone on the progress to gather metrics.
Research indicates that the more hands-on board members are, the better they perform. Executives and managers guarantee that organizations are practicing inclusivity with a diverse staff. However, each board may have a different plan. Always connect with stakeholders to determine their wants and needs.
DEI experts can help you take all the necessary steps when diversifying your company’s staff or leadership. They have the resources and experience to create or modify your diversity and inclusion plan to ensure thoughtfulness and updated vocabulary.
Equity enforcers are also knowledgeable of various local, state, and federal regulations that your company may need to obey for HR compliance. These pros can be brought on as consultants to help strategize, and they can also help implement policies if necessary.
With any position you’re looking to fill, it’s a given that you’re hunting for the best person for the job. The same goes for executive recruiters looking for new leadership. This can be hard because traditional hiring methods don’t have diversity and inclusion priorities. That means you’ll likely have to overhaul your entire hiring practices.
Luckily, there are several ways to improve your hiring practices to foster more diversity and inclusion in the office:
- If you already have diverse employees, try promoting from within.
- Revamp your job descriptions to include more inclusive wording.
- Tap into your resources to diversify your talent pools.
- Try new recruiting techniques to ensure more diverse candidates.
- Reach out to women’s or historically Black universities.
- Try the blind hiring method, where you remove a candidate’s personal information to eliminate bias.
In addition to blind hiring, executive recruiters can also be trained in unbiased interviewing. This can further ensure that recruiters ask questions and get honest answers.
To maintain the DEI protocols in your organization, offer workplace diversity support resources. One of the main ways to do this is to create Employee Resource Groups or ERGs.
ERGs are voluntary, employee-led groups that work to create inclusive communities within a business. ERGs help to generate diversity and promote inclusion by providing people with an open forum and judgment-free interactions. It’s a place where they can discuss interests and air grievances with people who share their perspectives.
ERGs can also help to provide personal and career development tools. These groups reinforce connections and nurture a sense of belonging among groups of employees. As a conscientious organization, you must give workers due credit and recognition.
Many companies and organizations publish statements on their website, handbooks, and job descriptions. They often express a commitment to being equal opportunity employers. However, blanket statements don’t always indicate meaningful diligence.
Most organizations willingly pursue diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Meanwhile, Executive Order 11246 prohibits employers from discriminating against potential employees. With that in mind, executive recruiters should ensure they follow best practices in hiring, firing, and otherwise.
Moral and social reasons aren’t the only concern. Long-term benefits to your company aren’t either. It’s illegal to discriminate against qualified candidates because of their protected characteristics. You can find out more by hiring an executive recruiter or auditing your existing DEI policies.
Executive recruiters can positively impact a workplace by focusing on diversity and inclusion while candidly evaluating applicants. There are several benefits to DEI implementation, including these:
- Bigger talent pool
- Increased employee engagement
- Increased innovation
- Improved reputation
- Reduced employee turnover
- More connections with customers
- Attract new audiences
Here is how it looks upon closer inspection:
If you eliminate bias in the hiring process, you will increase the size of your talent pool when recruiting. This could also mean reaching higher-quality candidates you may have missed before.
Expanding your recruitment efforts increases your chance of finding the best person for the position instead of selling yourself short because of bias and discrimination.
Employees who feel included and represented will be more engaged at work. When your employees feel compelled to engage in the workplace, they’ll be more willing to put in extra effort for your company or organization.
Engagement can have a ripple effect throughout your organization. It can impact profitability, team morale, and employee retention. Moreover, diversity and inclusion in the workplace enhance trust between employees and leadership.
Happy employees will be more likely to create, innovate, and collaborate. Diversity and inclusion in the workplace also expose employees to various new ideas, perspectives, and worldviews. Many different voices at the table open doors for creative thinking and brainstorming. Research indicates that diverse teams are more likely to develop fresh ideas and stay ahead of competitors.
Increased innovation can increase revenues. As a result, diverse companies are more profitable on average. They also outperform organizations without DEI protocols.
Entities with diverse teams make decisions faster than companies lacking diversity and inclusion. When employees are engaged and enjoy their workplace environment, they focus on their work and are motivated to drive sales.
Fostering diversity and inclusion within your company or organization makes it clear to others in your industry that you’re committed to fighting discrimination. This has to start from the top-down, with company leadership managing by example.
Diverse and inclusive workplaces make employees feel welcome and represented. Representative teams also make it easier for customers to interact with your employees. The reason is that clients can relate to someone on the staff. They feel like the organization understands their wishlist from a more intuitive perspective. This improves your reputation among employees and customers, other businesses, and future hires.
If your employees are happy, fulfilled, and feel valued at work, they’ll be less likely to leave or look for a new job. Recruitment and onboarding of new employees are costly and time-consuming. It’s more cost-effective to cultivate diversity and inclusion from within or through targeted executive recruiting. Create a corporate environment that nobody wants to leave.
Your customer base is likely disparate, so you’ll be more successful working with them if you have culturally varied employees and leadership. It’s possible that focusing on diversity and inclusion in the office will bring in new opportunities. However, you want to ensure that each group feels represented by your organization either way.
Research indicates that many people consider a company’s DEI compliance when looking for employment. While focusing on diversity can help recruiters avoid bias and open the talent pool during the hiring process, it can also attract new talent.
Young job seekers place more value on diversity and inclusion than previous generations. Suppose your company is not making strides to cultivate a varied workplace. In that case, you could miss out on fresh perspectives and innovative ideas.
Diversity and inclusion should be a top priority for executive recruiters. Creating an inclusive workplace that encourages diversity is key to promoting more innovation and creativity among employees, fostering a positive work environment, and improving the overall quality of work. A diverse leadership team leads by example and encourages inclusion among employees.
Executive recruiters should cultivate diversity and inclusion in their company or organization. Recruiters can take critical steps like revamping the hiring process and consulting with DEI experts. Companies that commit to diversity and inclusion have a better reputation, more innovation, and increased profits.
About the Author
K. Edwin Bryant is a highly respected senior pastor, professor and academic, published author, and corporate strategist with a passion to advocate for underrepresented communities.
Dr. Bryant has a Ph.D. from Macquarie University, Sydney, AU in Ancient History: New Testament and Early Christianity. Currently, Bryant is the COO of Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship International, Senior Pastor and CEO of Dayton, Ohio’s Mount Pisgah Church, chairman of the Board for Tehillah Music Group, and an adjunct professor of the New Testament & Early Christianity.
He uses his leadership and influence to pry open spaces of white privilege and create pathways of equality and belonging for the Black, Indigenous, and People of Color communities.
In Dr. Bryant’s book ChaRIOT: The New Cultural Conversation, he confronts difficult conversations to help non-blacks reinterpret public responses to oppression imposed on and experienced by the black community.
Dr. Bryant currently resides outside of Dayton Ohio with his wife and children. When he’s not working on a multitude of projects or catching up on trending events; you might find him watching Netflix (especially the Blacklist) or hitting the piano inspired by artists such as Robert Glasper, Moonchild, and Corey Henry.